An all-star lineup of musicians is arrayed for the "Messiah Musicians" performance at the St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Boca Grande.
Conductor and harpsichord Margaret Harris Smith, St. Andrew's organist and choirmaster since 1989, will take part in the 4 p.m. show Sunday, Dec. 9 at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, 380 Gilchrist Ave. Her recital appearances include Bruton Parish Church in Williamsburg, Va., and the Washington National Cathedral.
Other performers have a more international flavor.
Soprano Lorraine Murphy
Soprano Lorraine Murphy has taught and sung in Nigeria and performed in major countries in Europe.
Minister of Music at St. John's United Methodist Church in Sarasota, she is soprano section leader and board member of Key Chorale and a founding member of Sarasota's newest women's ensemble, Belle Canto. She performs with Amy Jo Connours in the ensemble "Three Divas and the Two Dons."
Mezzo soprano Connours is an accomplished oratorio singer who has performed Mozart's "Coronation Mass," Mendelssohn's "Elijah" and the "Celtic Mass" by Michael McGlynn. Her mezzo tones handle multiple genres ranging from opera, oratorios and the classics to jazz and contemporary composers. She recently returned from a summer tour singing across Europe in Spain, Ireland and Scotland.
What: "Messiah Musicians" performance
When: the 4 p.m. show Sunday, Dec. 9
Where: St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, 380 Gilchrist Ave.
Why: Holiday performance
Tenor Robert Lischetti has sung in concert and opera throughout the United States, including the Sarasota Opera, Venice Symphony and Southwest Florida Symphony Orchestra, and Europe. He teaches voice at his private studio and is music director at the Universalist-Unitarian Church in Sarasota.
Bass baritone Lothar ber Geest has performed more than four dozen opera, oratorio and musical theater roles, including appearances with Skitch Henderson and the New York City Pops Orchestra at Carnegie Hall and the National Orchestra at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., as the lead in Andrews Lloyd Webbers' "Phantom of the Opera." He's been on national tours performing Cole Porter, Richard Rodgers and others.
Marlena Chow has played violin for the Naples Philharmonic since 2001, and the Santa Fe Opera Orchestra since 2003. She is a certified Suzuki violin teacher and maintains a private violin studio in Naples.
Other talents include:
Violinist Roxane Frangie Solowey plays with the Sarasota Orchestra and is a founding member of Musicians Out of the Box and The Cypress Quartet. She teaches violin. In 2006 and 2012 MOB released two children's CDs that combine fairy tales with classical music, both of which won a Gold Award from the parents' Choice Foundation.
Nathan Frantz has played viola with the Sarasota Orchestra since 1999. He teaches string orchestra at Booker High School and spends summers on the faculty of Luzerne Music Center in Lake Luzerne, N.Y.
Julie Cornwall is a freelance cellist and contracted with the Southwest Florida Symphony. She has performed throughout the United States and abroad.
James Hignight, has played bass with the Bach Festival Orchestras in Orlando and Lake Wales, the Naples Master Singers, Imperial Symphony Orchestra and Hot Springs Music Festival Orchestra. He teaches bass at Lake Wales High School and attends Rollins College on a full music scholarship.